Have you found yourself in painful relationships that end up feeling like you are repeating the same pattern over and over?
Do you feel controlled, like someone else is running your life?
You can break these painful relationship patterns by learning to choose different people.
Learn to recognize the characteristics of Toxic People:
- You feel trapped, painted into a corner.
- They are often angry, cold, distant, and negative.
- They are condescending.
- They are inconsistent in their treatment of you—nice one minute, hostile and short the next.
- They send mixed messages, such as, “Come here,” and “Go away,” leaving you feeling anxious and confused.
- Their behavior is passive-aggressive, acting as if everything is okay, and then letting you know after the fact that it was not okay, and they’re upset with you for not knowing (like you should be able to read their mind). Crazy-making.
- You feel like you have to walk on eggshells around them.
- The give and take aspect of your relationship is way out of balance, with you doing most of the giving, and them doing most of the taking.
- They lack empathy or compassion.
- They blame others for everything. It is never their fault.
- They show no remorse or guilt. They do not care how you feel.
- They are arrogant and feel entitled.
- They brag about outsmarting.
- They live in a fantasy world.
- They lie.
- They abuse authority.
- They rewrite history to suit themselves.
- They are frauds and cheaters.
- They are two-faced.
What to Do With Toxic People in Your Life
If you know someone who has some of these traits, the good news is that you can recognize when you are with someone who is toxic by their behavior, and by the way that you feel when you are with them. You can also know that their bad behavior is not about or because of you.
The bad news is that these seriously disturbed individuals are not likely to change, ever. And in their arrogant entitlement, they will help themselves to everything and everyone that is precious in your life. They will not show any guilt or remorse, as they don’t feel any, and they will not give a moment’s thought to how you feel about it.
As therapists, we generally do not offer specific advice, such as go or stay. In the case of Toxic People, it is so clear that staying will only invite more abusive behavior that we can say that the only way to rid yourself of the toxicity is to get away from them and move on. Toxic people typically do not change, and the best way to protect yourself is to get out of harm’s way, giving yourself the true freedom to create new possibilities in your life.
If you are struggling with issues related to Toxic People in your life, or any other relationship issues, I would like to help. I look forward to hearing from you.